Electrical engineering PhD

The electrical engineering faculty in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering offer a doctoral degree in electrical engineering. Graduate courses and programs are offered in the following six areas of specialization:

The PhD in electrical engineering is awarded upon evidence of excellence in research leading to a scholarly dissertation that is a contribution to knowledge.

Degree requirements

The PhD program requires the following: 84 credit hours, a Written Comprehensive Exam, an Oral Comprehensive Exam, a Prospectus and a Dissertation.

PhD students are required to complete 84 credit hours of academic credit beyond the bachelor’s degree. The following summarizes the degree course requirements:

  1. Master’s degree: 30 hours, from any accredited institution.
  2. 500-level or above: 18 hours (6 classes), at least nine hours of EEE courses.
  3. Research class or omnibus course hours: 12 hours, can be 400-level and above.
  4. Research: 12 hours (EEE 792).
  5. Dissertation: 12 hours (EEE 799).

All courses counting toward the required 18 hour minimum must be at the 500-level or higher. Note all courses having the course number of 591 count as 400-level courses. EEE 790 Reading and Conference can be used for no more than three credit hours toward the required 18 credits of coursework.The content of any proposed Reading and Conference course must be reviewed and approved by the electrical engineering Graduate Program Chair before registering for the course.

The additional 12 hours (item #3 above) can be more hours of research (EEE 792) or can be class work as determined by the supervisory committee.

A qualifying examination, a comprehensive exam, and the dissertation defense are required. Additional information on the program can be found in the Graduate Program Handbook.

Admissions requirements

PhD program applicants must submit an online Graduate College application.

In general, a student must have a least a 3.00 GPA (out of 4.00) in all undergraduate course work and at least a 3.50 GPA in all graduate course work for admission to the PhD program. A student must usually hold a master’s degree before being admitted to the PhD program. Direct PhD admission is available for students graduating from an U.S. ABET-accredited electrical engineering program with a GPA of 3.60 or higher.  A student whose master’s degree is not from a U.S. institution must provide a score of at least 156 on the quantitative portion of the GRE.

Students interested in applying to this program must submit an online application through Graduate Admissions. In addition, an applicant whose native language is not English must demonstrate proficiency in the English language by scoring at least 90 on the Internet Based TOEFL (iBT) exam, or an overall band score of 6.5 on the IELTS exam. International students seeking teaching assistantships must demonstrate proficiency in spoken English by scoring at least 26 on the speaking portion of the iBT or 50 on the ASU administered Speaking Proficiency English Assessment Kit (SPEAK).

PhD applicants need to upload a statement of purpose in the application. The template for the statement of purpose can be found on our forms page. Three letters of recommendation are required. You will enter your recommender’s name, company, and email address in the application. After you submit the application, your recommenders will automatically receive an email with additional instructions. Your resume is not required.

You will need to mail official transcripts to the Graduate Admissions Office. For more information on how to apply and the address to send your transcripts to, please refer to the Graduate Admissions page.

Application deadlines

Fall Semester:

Preference is given to complete ECEE graduate applications received by December 31. Admission results should be available by March 1. Applications received after this preferred deadline will be considered.

Spring Semester:

Preference is given to complete ECEE graduate applications received by July 31. Admission results should be available by October 1. Applications received after this preferred deadline will be considered.

Next steps after admission

Congratulations on being admitted to the PhD program in Electrical Engineering!

Please review the following webpages:

If you cannot attend in the semester that you were admitted to, you can defer your admission by one semester. Please refer to this webpage for information on how to defer or cancel your admission.